Comments By Britton R.

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  • Britton R.
  • Joined:
  • 11 years, 4 months ago
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Posted:  10 years, 9 months ago

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Looking to get in - basic questions - hope its not repeats

Thanks Brett for the reply! It all makes sense except for CDL school. If I live in Montana, and I take the CDL school in Missouri, do I have to have an address and/or drivers license from Missouri? Thanks again.

If you're going to prime in missouri you will get your license in missouri at a temporary adress then you have to transfer it to your home state. I'm guessing most places will be the same or they may give you the paperwork to take to your home state.

Posted:  10 years, 9 months ago

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Update. Failed test. I'm a dummy

So Ive been stressing pretty hard about finally testing and not being prepared for it. Today was the day. Pretrip was passed without a problem. Straightline back wasn't an issue. My offset ate a lot of points after working on the other maneuvers more in the last day. Finally came the drivers side parallel. Now it was stressful enough just testing. But added to the the examiner had a DOT auditor on him which keant two people grading me. So I've ate up a lot of my poinylts on the offset and know my parallels are a bit hit or miss. Well... long story short I got it in. One more pull up, get out or encroachment and I would have failed. On my last g.o.a.l I was over on my tandems by about half a foot. The angle I was on didn't let me see that axle so I moved in as much as I could in the space left. I had no choice but to end the test because I couldn't get out again. The examiner and DOT auditor go to the front end and look down my blinside. They then walk about 10 feet forward and look back down again squatting and squinting. I was nervous. NERVOUS. I knew it was gonna be close. Then they come back and walk down to the end of the trailer on the blinside out of my sight from my horrible angle. They were back there for an eternity. I was praying the whole time. Eventually I see the examiner come up and he tells me to cut the engine and follow him. I do but quickly snuck a look on the way and it was CLOSE. He said nothing for about 100 yards as we walked towards the shack. Then he looks at me and says I'm lucky and it was barely in. The weight of the world was lifted. We got back to the shack and met up with my trainer. My trainer and I were instructed to bring the trailer around for the road test. We both looked at the tandem and agreed it could have easily been a fail. It was millimeters.

So once we bring the truck around I hop in to go out with the examiner. I pull up to the exit of the pad. I had time to go but there was a crst truck coming so I was nice and waited as he made it through the gate. As he was passing in front of me a car was coming to pull out of the lot almost across from me but they stopped short to let me go. I started pulling into the intersection as a car came down from the other side of the street and I misjudged it and was about five feet into the road when the examiner told me to stop and reverse back to the exit. A FREAKIN AUTO-FAIL AND I WASNT EVEN OUT OF THE PARKING LOT!!! Because I would have gad to cross the center line into that lane it made me a hazard and an auto-fail. In reality I had timeand the car would have stopped but a big no-no on the test. Entirely my fault. I had a lapse of judgement and it cost me. I can't believe I didn't make it out of the parking lot...

At the end of the day I'm not worried about it. Simple mistake, that's all. Just ashamed of myself but also get a laugh out of it. My driving is one thing I wasn't worried about for the test. Pretrip was questionable and I had almost no faith in my backing. Now the day is done and my pretrip and backing were passed. So in that regard I'm happy. Now tomorrow I will just have to retake my driving and make sure I'm on point. Just thought I'd share this crazy day.

Still can't believe I didn't even make it out of the lot... hahaha, just one more story to add to the rest.

Posted:  10 years, 9 months ago

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Shower Slippers/socks

No idea. My guess would be an outdoors store or bass pro type place.

Posted:  10 years, 9 months ago

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Can't get the alley dock, threatening to send me home

So after a month on the road with a trainer that didn't actually train me too much I'm back in Springfield with Prime. I hardly go any backing experience on the road. The last week we did a walmart dedicated route which was supposed to get me backing practice. They were all pretty much straight backs. I got better each time but still didn't get it fully. Sunday we got back to Springfield and have been working on the backng pad until today (wed). I got the straighline back on our first day here, and offsets day two. My offsets arent perfect but I get it.

Now, I've been getting killed on the alley dock. My trainer isn't much help. You have to start in the center lane. I cut my wheels hard to the right and roll with it around the time I see my landing gear open up and bring it around trying to curl it in the hole. At first I kept coming up short. So I went back a few feet before cutting it. That helped but no matter what I do I'm all over the boundry on the right side. By the time it starts looking good I'm either already on the line or close to it. I don't know how to fix that. Prime has a video showing the maneuver and the guy stays at least 10 ft from the line. Any advice???

Also to make things worse they are forcing me to start testing tomorrow or I'll be sent home. So I have no choice but to start testing tomorrow even though as of now I'm not at all prepared for the test. I have today to work on it but even then I have no idea if it will come together. So I feel I'm being set up for failure. I've worked my tail off for over a month and it doesn't seem to matter. Theyll send me home with a $3500+ bill. I'll have no license, no job, and no savings. My brain is dead, my knee is killing me from clutching on these backing maneuvers and the stress and pressure are driving me insane. I really don't know what to do. I'm trying everything I can but the stress of being sent home gets me so incredibly frustrated when I'm behind the wheel trying to back. I fail every time. Sometimes I get closer than the previous time but I'm so brain dead from this past month that I can't comprehend what I did differently.

Any advice, tips, or anything is needed. I'm driving myself insane. I keep trying to slow down and take a deep breath but the other side of my brain tells me to shut up and do it because I don't have time to waste.

Posted:  10 years, 9 months ago

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Pre-trip inspection

I do not know my way around a car engine (let alone a semi engine). I am trying to learn the pre-trip inspection but unfortunately, I don't know what the parts look like and I haven't found any pictures that shows a clear view. Any ideas on where I can find some pictures that I can learn from so that when the time comes that I look at a semi engine, I can point the parts out by sight? I have tried google pictures, youtube, and this site (you have a great site here, Bret, but I need better pictures :) ). Any help is appreciated. Thanks, Mark

Here on this site with the cdl study stuff there are "pretrip flash cards". They are good.

Posted:  10 years, 9 months ago

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Physical requirements for OTR trucking question

During the physical I had to lift a 50lb box from the floor. I think it was 50, I may be wrong. Either way you will have some kind of lifting during the physical.

Posted:  10 years, 9 months ago

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Weirdest load ever

Turkey bacon. Weird because bacon isn't turkey. Hahaha

Posted:  10 years, 9 months ago

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Distress factor of living with a trainer?

I'm currently in week 4 with a trainer just to get my license. Once I take-and hopefully pass-the test I'll go out with another trainer fkr a month or two. Its not an easy situation. You could get someone that you become great friends with. On the other hand he could be a nightmare. That's just the way it is. Its a necessary evil to become a driver. My trainer and I get along, but I probably won't be best friends with him. After so long I'm tired of him already. I could complain for a while about him, but its nothing that is too horrible I can't stand. My big issue is his lack of actual training. Most of it is me figuring things out on my own. Other issues I have are his bad habits. The "don't do this" or "you didn't see that" is a bad way to train someone. If it got to the point where I felt in danger I would get off the truck. It hasn't, and hopefully at the end of the week I will be done with it and get with a better trainer.

What I'm trying to say is that you probably won't get a perfect trainer. Even if you get a good one you're probably gping to get sick of them. Its tough living with someone in these conditions. The stress of learning is hard enough. It will wear you out. I'm at the point wheretmy trainer feels like a ball and chain. Its just something you need to fight through. My ipod has kept me sane during this process. Find a way to get your mind off of things out there.

One other note is time flies out here. I feel like I've been training forever, but at the same time its went so fast. Remember eventually you will be by yourself. When you need to ask a question, you'll be alone. Make the most out of it you can.

Posted:  10 years, 10 months ago

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Downshifting during driving test

I understand that during your driving test they don't want you coasting but do they expect you to go down through each gear? My trainer is clueless when I asked him. I've been trying to teach myself and get better. Depending on the situation I usually go from 10th to 9th or 8th then 7th and 6th and usually come to a stop after 6th. I'm not comfortable in the lower gears. Sometimes if I'm slowing and not stopping I'll get it into 4th or so like going into a truck stop but not having to stop.

Is this ok? Are you just showing you can downshift, or are there specific things they are looking for you to do?

Posted:  10 years, 10 months ago

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Frustrated Trainee

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A crappy way to learn, but I'm learning.

Stick it out and it will come. Best of luck to you.

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How is driving a truck a crappy way to learn to be a truck driver? I have to ask and do not mean to be an ahole. Britton, My trainer sat in the jump seat playing some game and seemingly not paying attention to my driving. He was paying attention, but, he did not show it. There is reason for this. What a student should do is drive the truck and trailer with a curiosity and purpose...safely.

I'm not saying that driving is a bad way to learn. Experience goes a long way. However, in this case I havld never set foot in a truck. My double clutching experience was from a few runs on a simulator where the clutch was not at all like a real truck. We weren't taught anything about driving. Just put into the drivers seat and sent off on a load. Some practice in a parking lot going through gears would have helped quite a bit. Instead it was "we have a load to California... drive". That's a lot of pressure to learn with cars and people around. Having zero experience and going on the road to me was dangerous. Day 1 was 30 miles. Day 2 was over 400. It was like throwing someone that can't swim into the deep end and telling them to swim. I did it. I may have been terrified, but I did it. Now I'm doing it well. I just think that getting my permit one day then being sent out over the road the next day isn't a good way to do it. None of the classroom stuff was about driving or shifting or anything. It was qute literally 'on the job training'. That was a lot of pressure for only having a permit.

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